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The Mind-Control Cat Parasite

Transcript-The Mind Control Cat Parasite
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It’s a cinematically horrifying Halloween 🎃 and there’s a movie-like monster lurking in your kitty litter! 🎬 This week you’ll hear the scary science behind toxoplasma gondii, a mind-controlling cat parasite! 🦠 Biologist Sebastian Lourido helps us tell the true tale of toxoplasma’s quest for cat domination, and what scientists are doing to stop the parasite in its banana-shaped tracks. 🐱

Learn more about Sebastian and his research in our bonus interview extra on Patreon!

Artwork for "The Mind-Control Cat Parasite." Pictured is an evil cat on an old-school TV.



Photo of Sebastian Lourido.

Sebastian Lourido is an associate professor of biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a member of the Whitehead Institute. Sebastian and his team research the vulnerabilities of parasites and harness them to help treat infectious diseases.

Here's a TEDxYouth talk where Sebastian discusses his journey into science and what he does now:


As you learned in the episode, toxoplasma gondii is no joke! Here's a SciShow video that also discusses science's new favorite villain:

You might have been wondering about toxoplasma gondii's banana shape and interesting movement. Here's a video of them moving around:

Believe it or not, there are more parasites like toxoplasma gondii out there. You heard right: more small, mind-controlling parasites are out there! Here's a TED-Ed video that takes a look at them:


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